Rain escapees

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Lilwriggler
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Rain escapees

Post by Lilwriggler » Mon Aug 12, 2019 7:20 pm

It is very noticeable that the herd seem to panic a bit when there is significant summer rainfall and water in the sump. I checked today after yesterdays rain and there were more than 50 escapees under the bins next to the wormery. The spot is reasonably sheltered from the elements for summer, but i may pop it into the garage when significant rain is forecast. I think they are getting out of the sides of the wormery rather than the tap, im assuming they are not washed out. Have you experienced similar?

WillyWorm
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Re: Rain escapees

Post by WillyWorm » Mon Aug 12, 2019 10:14 pm

You are right about worms panicking at times of heavy rain. The two most common reasons given are 1) that they fear their barrows may be flooded and this could drown them. 2) The other reason given is that at time of storms the atmospheric pressure changes and that worms will move down into the bedding/soil or go up into the lid/surface and this is an attempt to maintain the normal pressure.
My worm bins are in a small shed/storage box all year and don’t seem to be affected by the rain. So my thoughts are that the worms moving and sometimes leaving the bin maybe related to the change in moisture levels in the bin when it rains.

Willy

Lilwriggler
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Re: Rain escapees

Post by Lilwriggler » Mon Aug 12, 2019 10:51 pm

That makes sense, they are up and down in the wormery over the course of the day and it is principally around dampness in the lid.

Lilwriggler
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Re: Rain escapees

Post by Lilwriggler » Wed Sep 18, 2019 7:23 pm

I have a regular number of escapees in general at the moment and not sure why. Still have plenty of healthy worms in all levels. perhaps my bottom tray is a bit wet or i’m not varying their food source enough. There is cardboard covering my feed tray and a piece in the bottom tray which they are steadily also breaking down. I haven’t remembered to add crushed egg shell for a couple of months so may do that too.

Just as a reminder insulating the herd, or in my case moving into the garage is based on outside temperatures dropping into single figures isn’t it? I’m also conscious of rain so i may move it in during October if i can tidy the garage up by then...

WillyWorm
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Re: Rain escapees

Post by WillyWorm » Thu Sep 19, 2019 8:11 am

I think your bin is too wet or the worms are getting over crowded (approx 2000 to 2500 worms is a good population go our bins)
I gave up having my bins outside some time ago, the worms seem happier and more productive since I did.

Lilwriggler
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Re: Rain escapees

Post by Lilwriggler » Thu Sep 19, 2019 5:45 pm

I’ll look at the too wet issue, which i think is most likely. Planning on adding so dry leaf litter to my bottom tray as the hamster bedding seems to take a long time to properly breakdown. Should help the wetness side of things, will move it in sooner rather than later.

Lilwriggler
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Re: Rain escapees

Post by Lilwriggler » Sat Sep 28, 2019 6:24 pm

The leaf litter seems to have helped and with it in the garage there isn’t much additional water getting in. Hopefully i will get the balance right soon. Still finding tiger worms under the bin outside put only 3 or 4 now, not sure if they are wild ones i am just adding back to the wormery!

Smallthings
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Re: Rain escapees

Post by Smallthings » Thu Oct 03, 2019 11:02 am

Just to say I find it fascinating to observe and continually learn about our worms' behaviour. Mine gather in the lid too when we have heavy rainfall, even though they are inside a shed all year round, so not responding to actual rain getting in, only changes in pressure. But that seems to be the only time there are any adults are in the lid. However I generally find a small number of babies in the lid every morning regardless of weather and I have come to the conclusion that, much like young humans, they're just exploring their environment!

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wormcity
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Re: Rain escapees

Post by wormcity » Thu Oct 03, 2019 1:58 pm

Smallthings wrote:
Thu Oct 03, 2019 11:02 am
much like young humans, they're just exploring their environment
This is the wise parent saying - Yes you can go - just don't stray too far :D

Lilwriggler
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Re: Rain escapees

Post by Lilwriggler » Sat Oct 26, 2019 7:27 pm

Number of escappes has reduced, probably as the temperature drops a bit. But i have been putting some of the escappees in my rotating composter which is full now and being left for the winter. Its says You can do that, musn’t rotate it too much though, if it at all. I did one rotation today and to my delight it uncovered a number of worms in there so they must be breeding nicely. It may be harder to keep it insulated but it doesn’t get quite so cold down here and the volume in the composter is large so hopefully they’ll do well. They ultimately will end up in the garden when i harvest the composter. The wormery is looking very nice too with the addition of the autumn leaves, so happy!

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